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Determination of Daily Sediment, Nutrient, and Sediment-Associated Chemical Concentrations and Loads for the Conterminous U.S.Piloted in the Mississippi River Basin
John R. Gray (USGS), Chuck E. Shadie (COE), Jim Stefanov (USGS) and Charlie Crawford (USGS)
with considerable heavy lifting by our USGS and COE colleagues
Follow-up to the July 27 and Oct. 6, 2009, USGS-COE Quarterly Meetings
USGS National Center, Reston, VA
February 2, 2010
“Provide a proposal for National Sediment and QW monitoring, piloted in the Mississippi River Basin, at next Quarterly Mtg.”
Sept. 27 USGS-COE meeting
Nov. 3 EPA/NOAA/USDA meeting
And here we are…
National Sediment & QW Monitoring Program
Formal submission of Proposal to COE and USGS
Need for Monitoring Program
Description of Key Program components
Great Lakes &
A Proposal to Establish a Long-Term, Base-Funded, Network-Design National Monitoring Network to Generate Sediment, Nutrient, and Sediment-Associated Chemical Concentrations, Loads, Budgets and Temporal Trends
Integrated with existing networks.
Based on National Monitoring Network Design (ACWI)
National Program cost <1% of estimated costs/sediment damages annually
Ergo, 1% reduction in damages/costs will pay for the National Program
VISION: A NATIONAL Sediment & QW Monitoring Program Cost/Benefits
Based in part on National Monitoring Network Design (~50% of available NMN sites)
The means for quantifying sediment and QW fluxes to address large-scale problems
A framework for supporting “nested” sediment- & QW-flux research on smaller scales
NOW: Mississippi River Basin Pilot Program
Sediment Damages in North America (mostly in US) total $20-$50 BILLION annually (ARS-USGS)
As much as 25 mi2 Louisiana Coast lost annually
Northern Gulf of Mexico Hypoxia
COE dredging programs in MRB alone total ~$1Billion annually
EPA, NOAA, USDA, others have major investments in MRB
Because it is necessary for making informed decisions on resources management.
Because even modest returns on investment will pay for the program – likely many times over.
Because reliable, network-design-based information will greatly increase the accuracy of our models.
1. Establish a sediment, nutrient, and solid-phase QW monitoring program on the Mississippi, Missouri, and Ohio Rivers, and selected tributaries to compute fluxes at key spatial and time scales.
2. Ascertain trends in sediment and constituent transport on selected economic, ecologic, and restoration activities in the MRB.
MRB Pilot Program -- OBJECTIVES
20 priority 1
48 priority 2
Max use of USGS gages & programs
MRB Pilot Program -- Scope
Fluxes by size category (silt/clay vs sand)
Full gradation from samples
Nutrients, other QW
Filtered Water (routine)
Nutrients, common ions, trace elem., pesticides, other
Bed Material (2/year)
MRB Pilot Program -- Constituents
Federal Interagency Sedimentation Project Samplers and Sampling Techniques Are the Standards
USA, and International Standards Organization
Paul Buchanan (USGS), San Francisco/Delta Bay, April 1999
Courtesy of Sontek/YSI, Inc.
1.5 – 120 meter penetration
Cooperative Research and Development Project
Between Sequoia, Sci., Inc.,USGS, FISP
Identify phase of transport of sediments as a function of location, flow, other variables.
Calibrate model(s) to “allocate” sediment to source types based on digital coverages, thus enabling simulation of sediment transport by real or simulated land use.
All data on-line/publically available.
MRB Pilot Program – Synthesis
Interest in initiating Louisiana MRB monitoring in 2010 (Science and Technology Program – COE and Louisiana).
Proof-of-concept / demonstration for surrogate monitoring, and shake-out for methodologies/protocols.
Represents a phased approach.
MRB Pilot Program – MRB Pilot Prelude?
EPA and NOAA have considerable interest in sources and transport mechanisms for nutrients.
USDA likewise has interest in sediment and nutrient transport from farmlands to receiving waters.
31 MRB States have vested interests.
MRB Pilot Program – Potential Partners
MRB Pilot Program, 2012++, $17.6M yr 1, ~$14M thereafter until subsumed by ~$75-$90M/yr National Program.
Based in part on National Monitoring Network Design – no substitute for some level of baseline monitoring.
Provide technically supportable basis for modeling and management.
Provide improved information for decision-makers on various projects in the MRB.
Full proposal and synopsis respectfully submitted by the COE and USGS development team.
Both publically available.
Intend to share with EPA, NOAA, USDA, and other potential partners.
Guidance on how to proceed.
Thanks for the opportunity to share our half-year-long efforts.